Think back to your old TV and of the static between TV channels. Well, three-quarters of those radio airwaves, or ‘white space’ spectrum, are completely unused. With the US switching off the analogue TV signal in Feb 2009 Google wants to blow open that wireless spectrum, effectively for a new and more powerful generation of WiFi. Other A-list backers with a dollar or two to spend with lobbyists include Intel, Microsoft and Motorola.
It would be free to air (and unlicensed), like WiFi is now. Needless to say TV execs and wireless services providers are hell-bent on stopping the FCC from ruling in favour of such a free-spirited act.
Take 90 seconds for the pros:
– Interference. That’s certainly what some cell phone companies argue.
– So far, the devices that supposedly work over white spaces keep failing [US] government tests.
This is a US only movement but I can’t help but cheer them on in the hope that a successful American model gets put into play in Europe. Unfortunately the FCC vote may well be delayed further than next month.
If you believe in the cause you can sign the petition here.